how to convert a closet into an entryway nook


I have long dreamed of a spacious and perfectly organized foyer for my home. A place where boots are happy hidden, and strollers can be left in their open position and not be in the way (gasp!). The reality is that I’ve spent most of my adult life in big cities, Melbourne and now Toronto, where this dream has never been possible. I’ve had the good fortune to live in some amazing locations, but the space itself has always been compact.

Recently, we sold our condo in Toronto to rent a house with a spacious yard. The house is a decent size, but the entryway was problematic. The front door opens directly into the living room and the unorganized front closet ended up being the place where stuff amassed. Additionally the configuration of the living room didn’t provide a space for the kids to sit down to take off shoes. As a result they would run through the front door dragging dirt everywhere and it was driving me nuts!

The front closet was the key to solving my entryway woes. I decided to turn the 4×3 closet into the mudroom of my dreams in miniature.

before

The goal for this project was to make the closet a nook that we could walk into and add seating. This is what I did:

Step 1. Remove closet doors and door tracks. If you are renting you can store doors & tracks to replace before you leave.

Step 2. Remove the coat rail. Replacing the coat rail with coat hooks on the back wall will allow you to walk into the closet nook. You will lose some coat storage.

Step 3. Paint. I chose to change the drab renter beige paint colour to a moody dark green BEHR Night Mission. This is a small space so have some fun with it! I also debated a light a bright rose colour which would also be a beautiful choice.

Step 4. Add shoe storage. I found these AMAZING Ikea shoe storage boxes that are so versatile. They’re stackable and have a very slim profile. I’ll definitely be using them for more projects in the future; as side tables, storage to hide cables, storage for kids art supplies, the list goes on!

Step 5. Seating. You can get fancy here and build something custom, or you can do what I did and buy a cute handmade or vintage stool. For an Ikea option, these benches are affordable and you could easily jazz them up. I found my stool on Facebook Market Place, but this Etsy Shop sells beautiful handmade stools for around $150CAD.

Step 6. Add your personal storage needs. Outside of the basics you may want a designated place for your fave sunnies, a hook for a dog leash, a board for notes, a place to hang a sun hat, storage for kids’ backpacks etc. We needed a home for a broom, storage for plastic and reusable bags, and a place for bike helmets.

Step 7. Decorate. Every entryway needs a fabulous rug, a mirror, and a place for keys and mail. We have a large mirror in the living room so we didn’t need one here, but you will if you don’t have one. It’s a small space so you can have some fun with the space for low risk. I went with some beautiful baskets, dried flowers from the yard, and second hand art pieces.

solutions:

The finished closet nook has made a huge difference in the organization and enjoyment of our living room space. Having a place to sit in the entryway is a game changer and I’m loving having neat storage for shopping bags. Just this morning my one-year-old was sitting on the stool practicing putting on his shoes. I plan on changing out the flower basket with seasonal blooms each month.

Before and After!

I hope this inspires you to create the entryway of your dreams, even if it is in miniature!

Talk soon! Sarah

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